Talk:Disability/Archive 1

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Here is a partial list of disabilities, probably not as conceptually well-organized as it could be. We invite knowledgeable people to put this page in order!

Hello, may I ask as politely as possible where you get your knowledge base on disabilities to say that this list is not conceptually well-organized? These are the major sections of disabilities. Did you want me to put further explanation after each term so that it would sound educated to your uneducated mind on this subject? So if you say this is not well-organized, but that you don't know and need someone more knowledgeable, how did you know it is not well-organized? This seems nonsensical to me. This brings up another important and general question. How do the people of this Wiki jukge if something is scholarly or not, if you are not scholoars on everything? You must just look at it and think if it sounds good according to some loose and uneducated idea of waht "sounds" educated. Is this pride? I don't know, maybe you know something I don't, but then agon, how in that case, how would you know it was not well organized, and thus asked for someone knowledgeable on the subject. Interesting. How do you know it is not in order already? I wish I could give you my email address.

Comments about a page, especially when they get very lengthy, are put on "talk" pages like this page.----

You seem to be new to Wikipedia. Well, anyone can add anything they want to any page, and others can feel free to change it (or change it back!). I suggest you read the welcome page and follow the links. If you want to spend very much time on Wikipedia, you'd better get used to other people editing what you do. This requires thick skin.

The list didn't make any sense to me as a list of disabilities--that's all. That was just my own opinion. I don't know "the people of this Wiki" judge the scholarliness of anything; that's up to each of them individually.

--Larry Sanger

Q on disabilities: How do you place into the existing different categories self induced ones such as alcoholism (recognized by ADA)?---- Under Substance Abuse...:-). I believe this is only recognized as a disability "protected fully by the ADA," if the substance abuser is in treatment. The ADA defines "a disabiltiy as anything that interferes with one or more functions of every day living." Therefore, perceived disabilities, are counted too, like skin that is marked with many visisble large "strawberry" birthmarks. Can check on alcoholism...

I suppose a recalcitrant spouse could be a disability, then... (ducking)---- So could Wikipedia addiction...(running for his/her life)----.

I took my definition from US Law, the ADA. Where did you ever get this one? The ADA is vague. Your definition has no meaning to me. And this real or imagined disability is imagined by whom, may I ask. Please give a source for your definition. As for your 2 main categories, do you really think there is a big difference between a baby born blind and one who becomes so at a week old? RoseParks

I meant to use 'physical and mental' instead of 'real and imagined'. That might have sidetracked you.

I am still asking for the source of your definition. The ADA definition: A "disabled person" is one who can not perform one or more of the activities of daily living" is vague enough. Yours, "a disability is some physical or mental limitation which prevents full utilization of a person's ability/functionality." strikes me as meaningless. A person's ability to do what? Further, some disabilities are both physical and mental or this distinction can not be made at this point. There is an entire school of psychiatry that would claim that many of the conditions that have been called mental, like "depression," are actually chemical imbalances in the brain. This is supported to a certain extent by the fact that medications that restore certain chemical imbalances in the brain, do return patients to a state of mental health. Example: All those new antidepressants one hears about in the Media, are SSRI's, that is selective seritonin reuptake inhibitors and serve to bring the level of seritonin, a neurotransmitter, to a normal levels, in a patient using them. This gives some credence to the hypothesis that atleast some mental disorders are, in fact, physical impairments. The Courts, in enforcing the ADA, and the Justice Department primarily, in setting guidelines based on the ADA, have separated them, simply because, physical disabilities require different accomodations from "mental" ones. A person in a wheelchair, to be able to work, for instance, needs a workplace with wider doorways, aisles and turn space, air-pressure doors, lower shelves, possibly assistive equipment, etc. A person who is obssesive-compulsive, may need frequent breaks at work, to say, wash their hands or comb their hair, repeatedly.

The definition is my own and not from any dictionary or other reference work.---- Then if you don't mind I will replace it with a recognized one. RoseParks.

Alternate Scheme:

Behavioral disability
Chronic disability
Communicative disability
Developmental disability
Learning disability
Mental disability
Multiple disability
Temporary disability

Can someone expand on how disabilities are treated differently in different cultures/countries?---- Do you really want to hear in how many countries they are simply killed or abandoned as children?

Of course we do! What could possibly be a better use of an encyclopedia than to shed the harsh light of reality upon the practices of people across the planet so that they can be compared and hopefully changed where needed? --LDC

as a disabled person (CP) this page says alot about things - i just wish people that i meet would A) not say "spastic" to me and B) not talk slow to me as if i am mentally disabled as well as physically disabled.

-- Paul Melville Austin

This entire article needs a rewrite, probably under "Disability" rather than "Disabilities". A broad definition rather than a list of medical conditions would be a good start, as well as the social model of disability ( ), and the distinction between a disability and an impairment -- Tarquin

I work near a school or training center for the blind. Sometimes, I ask a cane-carrying blind person if they would like help. Most of the time, they accept.

How can I reconcile my offer to help (and their frequent ready acceptance) with the "etiquette guideline" advocated in the article? Are they accepting only to be polite (despite my rudeness for offering)? Is it a special case, since I'm near a school and they are more likely to actually need help? Am I miscalculating the proportion of accepters (maybe more say no than i remember)?

I've had numerous encounters wherein the persons I helped seemed genuinely grateful for my offers. Once in Penn Station I carried some bags for a blind couple. They said I was much more polite and helpful than the conductors.

I daresay I'm pretty good at offering help (and taking no for an answer). Absent a really good reason to stop offering help to people who seem to need it, I'm going to keep walking up to blind people and saying, "Hi! Would you like some help?"

-- Ed Poor, Tuesday, June 11, 2002

however, the social exclusion they may experience (lack of accessible transport, no adapted public toilets, buildings which are innaccessible) is caused by their environment, not their physical condition.

That is odd, it is due to the combination. If it has nothing to do with disability we are talking about social exclusion of everybody, and it does not belong in this article. - Patrick 13:05 18 Jun 2003 (UTC)

disability is a social exclusion. Might need to NPOV it, but disability campaigners would say that the problem a wheelchair user has in entering a building is entirely the fault of the building. Saying it's also because they can't walk would be "normalization" -- saying that there is something 'bad' or 'wrong' about an impairment, and that walking is the 'correct' way to be -- Tarquin 13:17 18 Jun 2003 (UTC)

I'm fixing the NPOV changes made to this article, among other things. --Kael 01:16, 18 Nov 2004 (UTC)

May I interject that this article's treament of the diverse views of disability is greatly appreciated, particularly in light of it's discussion of deaf people and their culture, a culture I wholeheartly embrace. The Deaf article is currently under the supervision of a mediator because of some edits that are almost too hidious to describe. Once the mediator has been appointed, it would be my great pleasure to invite the contributors to this "disability" subject to join in on the improvement of the deaf article. It's a total mess right now and a notice has been posted asking people not to edit the page. It may have to be torn down to its foundation and reconstructed. I am diligently working to put the "deaf" house in order. I thank you for your efforts here. To read this page has made my day. :-) Ray Foster 22:48, 26 Dec 2004 (UTC)


Greetings. Ableism redirects to this topic, yet there doesn't seem to be anything much written here about it. I think there should be, or else it should be a topic of it's own, as it is a very serious - yet not often talked about - form of discrimination. Thoughts? --Mista-X 01:24, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)

what about a section on disabled history We need one. questons like how did we get to this postition?, do we have a history? need to be answerd James cullis

Person First Movement

When I google this phrase, I don't get much aside from Wikipedia mirrors. Are there any citations for this term? If those exact words aren't usually used, it shouldn't be capitalized, at least. CDC (talk) 22:10, 13 November 2005 (UTC)

Look at this website. It is common among Down syndrome advocacy groups: [[1]]

Compound Disabilities

I was looking at this article and was wondering if there exists a term for or formal distinction between people with multiple or compound disabilities and people that have a dominant disability. -- Joseph Lorenzo Hall 19:08, 17 December 2005 (UTC)

What is disability? What is "disabled"? Why the debate?

"Disability" and "disabled" are terms that are undergoing change due to the disability rights movement both in the U.S. and U.K. To a lesser extent this is occurring worldwide, but I can only speak for the U.S. and to a lesser extent the U.K.

Conventional definitions of "disabled" and "disability" stem from social service programs and benefits programs such as Social Security. These definitions, dating back many years (right now I don't have time to look this up -- see Deborah Stone's book 'The Disabled State' for more on this) uniformly used the term "disabled" or "disability" to mean "unable" -- to work, to handle gainful employment, etc. If you look up definitions of "disabled" you'll find these kinds of definitions.

To most people today the term "disabled" still means that, and, more broadly, means "unable to perform" this or that physical or mental function.

Even more broadly, a large group of physical or mental conditions are considered to be "disabilities" -- things people have also called "afflictions" or "impairments" or "injuries" or "diseases." The language here is not precise, so please do not quibble with it at this point. We are trying to get to a larger understanding, so let's move on:

Beginning in the 1970s, people labeled as 'disabled' (either because they fell under the Social Security definition or because they had some sort of injury or condition considered a "disability") began seeking changes in society that would allow them to have a better life. Since the 1980s, this effort has generally been termed "disability rights" advocacy or "disability rights activism." The term is "disability rights" -- not "disabled rights" or "handicapped rights" simply because historically and politically that's the term that the activists themselves have come to call it.

So the correct term is "disability rights."

Back to "disabled":

Another term that grew in popularity during the first part of the 20th Century was "handicapped." The conventional wisdom has it that this was a term first used by the social service field; it's intent was to focus on social conditions: to say that an individual was "handicapped" by such and such -- by paralysis, by being kept out of buildings, whatever. (It is not true, as some have said, that the term comes from "cap in hand." See for a good discussion of this.) The term comes from sports: handicapping mean assigned some extra burden or weight.

Back to the birth of today's disability rights movement: budding activists did not like having been 'defined" by the social service system basically rebelled against the term "handicapped" SIMPLY BECAUSE IT HAD BEEN ASSIGNED TO THEM BY OTHERS -- and, in choosing a new term, chose "disabled." Anecdote has it that Judy Heumann led the change, arguing that "others handicap us but we are disabled people" -- this is in no way an exact quote but it carries the flavor of Heumann's thinking.

So, activists in the U.S began using "disabled." As in "disabled person."

Then a movement came along to change the wording to "people first language" -- so, it was argued, use the term "people with disabilities."

Britain's disability rights theorists and disability studies leaders reject that, and stick with "disabled person." Currently in the U.S. activists seem divided.

This is a very very brief overview. I will try to add more and flesh this out in coming weeks.

We must keep in mind in all of this that the disability rights movement and its thinking is almost unknown outside the movement itself, thus, the debate on wikipedia over this entry. I will provide some links as well to read more about this.

Many people still use "handicapped" or "crippled" or "afflicted." None of these terms is looked upon with favor by anyone in the organized U.S. or U.K. disability rights movement. "Handicapped" is truly detested in U.K. circles.

Hope this brief intro helps.

[Unsigned comment by User:RaggedEdgeOnlineEditor, 15 May 2006]


OK, so the title of this article is disability, but it doesn't actually really discuss what disability actually is. Instead, it seems very concerned with political correctness: what is disability? How should we refer to a person who is disabled, or to a person who is not disabled? These are worthwhile questions and should certainly be part of an article on this topic, but they shouldn't constitute the entirety of the article, and the article shouldn't attempt to dictate the "right" answers.

For a good contrast, compare African American. Unlike the present article, this article clearly states that African American is a term used to describe a particular group of people. It then describes the group, the origin of the term, the development in usage of the term over a period of time, and so on. Also unlike the present article, it doesn't attempt to say what the "right" way to use the term is, or what the "right" term is to describe a particular group of people. Instead, it simply describes, in a neutral and factual way, the history and contemporary usage of the term. rhaas 23:27, 14 June 2006 (UTC)

etymology of the word disabeld

Can soneone help me on this? I need to find out about the history of the word "disabled". Questions like when has the word appeared for the first time? Who used it the first time? My mothertongue is German, I know about the word history of the German word "behindert", but I would find it intressting how it is in other languages. Thank you for your help

I think it might be a good idea to look for the etymologies for the words "Asthmatic", "Asthma", "Disease" and "Disability", "Disabilities" and the euphemism for the Disabled, "Differently-abled" at the same time. I expect the same processes could be used to find all six. 16:44, 13 November 2006 (UTC)

copyright violation

The defining disablities was extended with a cut an past verison from that document has no GFDL message and it i suspected it does not have a proper copyright. reverted to a version of 30 oct. 2006 :Leuk he 14:00, 10 November 2006 (UTC)


I noticed the Disability and Disabilities pages are marked as suggested for merging, I couldn't see a discussion already maybe I've missed it. Could they be merged? I would suppose, personally, via using the singular form as the page title, in the standard way I think? This could be introduced as "A Disability is..." rather than "Disability is..." if the latter more generalized concept is disliked by some as opposed to a more 'atomized' concept? (is that why there's currently two pages?). That distinction would still be addressed within the page of course. EverSince 11:43, 16 December 2006 (UTC)

Having left the message above, & having looked at the Wikipedia merge guide, & with the merge suggestion tag having been there since October, I'm going to be bold and merge the contents of Disabilities in to Disability, and then edit. If anyone objects please feel free to revert/discuss. EverSince 17:56, 22 December 2006 (UTC)

I'm done for now I think, I hope not too much stuff left out or changed or added, as I say please feel free to reinstate anything of course. EverSince 19:14, 22 December 2006 (UTC)

Person with Assist Needs

What is most objectionable regarding the vast majority of societal terms used to refer to this human and cultural dimension called 'disability' is that these terms are generally used to negatively summarize a person's entire being. I cease to be a man and suddenly I become a 'disabled' man replete with all the assumptions associated with the phrase. Hence the development of 'person with' language, as well as the World Health Organization's attempt to differentiate between the terms Handicap, Impairment and Disability.

I'd like to suggest yet another evolution of the construct: person(s) with assist needs. The idea is to be more context specific. While I am not "disabled" in most areas of my life. I work, I ski, I play piano, etc., I do have assist needs in specific situations. I have mobility assist needs, so I use a wheelchair. I have dressing assist needs, so I use a personal assistant, etc. I have colleagues who have speech assist needs, and use speech output technology. It may not be a complete solution to the problem of linguistic expression, but it is less all encompassing and more positive by altering the focus of the construct to the fact that assistance is needed in specific situations.

Just a thought. Burt Pusch 02/19/2007 20:23, 19 February 2007 (UTC)

I would dispute the above. "Disabled" is an adjective and fulfils the same grammatical role as other adjectives in the same context. I do not cease to be a man because I am a clean-shaven man. If someone were to describe me as such, I have no reason to assume they are trying to "summarise my entire being". (talk) 00:33, 26 March 2010 (UTC)


Under 'social model' the section ends -For this model disability is a political issue.” (p.20) " implies it's a quote from somewhere, as does (p.20) but where is it a quote from? I'm removing/rephrasing it for nowMerkinsmum 20:28, 8 March 2007 (UTC)


Are there any wiki about disability, people with disabilities and people´s cases ? (preferly multilingual, as Wikipedia). Thanks in advance.

There is Disapedia but it is only in English.

Stringerace 11:26, 13 August 2007 (UTC)

Is there any para-disability, which means....

it is caused by disabled situations or persons???

External links

I recently added an external link to a resource in relation to disability applications by people with mood disorders such as bipolar disorder. This link was removed and I was advised it was inappropriate. However, I notice that the last 2 external links, Parents with Disabilities Online and Applying for disability are both links to commercial websites. Why are they entitled to be here when the link to was removed? I am well aware of the "no-follow" treatment for links and did not add the link to improve my search engine rankings - I added it to assist bipolar people in their quest for disability entitlements. Parity exists in name only and mental health claims are notoriously difficult to pursue.SJaneM 18:14, 23 August 2007 (UTC)

I restored this link - please at least read the material and let us discuss it. The webpage referenced has been rewritten to contain more info and the e-book link removed in case that is what you objected to. I do not see why this link is not as legitimate as the 2 links immediately above it. People with affective disorders such as bipolar face special challenges in applying for disability and need tailored resources. The suggestion that this page is linked in order to improve search rankings (which of course it does not) was very insulting and patronizing - perhaps this was not intended but this is a good faith addition and I would appreciate the presumption of good faith as per Wikipedia guidelines. SJaneM 02:47, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

Part of the issue with this link is that is very specific - one aspect (disability benefits) of one disability group (persons with bipolar disorder) in one country (the United States). It might be appropriate on a page about bipolar disorder, or about mental health issues, but I think it is too narrow for this very general page. (I think the same is probably true of several of the links currently here - they could use some trimming back per WP:LINKS. - Eron Talk 02:53, 11 September 2007 (UTC)

Footnote #2 "Disability NOW Time To Talk Sex at Disability NOW" has a broken link. Raigedas (talk) 16:25, 15 February 2009 (UTC)

My irony meter has just exploded

I was doing some typo correction of "parapalegic" and came across this article. I noticed that it used strikeout text to remove parts that some editor considered objectionable. Strikeout should *never* be used in articles - by default, screen readers like JAWS and other Windows screen readers make no distinction between attributes of the text - bold, italic, underline, ETC. Therefore the strikeout text would have been read normally with no indication that it was struck out. Talk about equal rights. :-) Anyway, I generally agree with the person who put the strikeout marks there that the text was problematic so I have removed it entirely in this edit. Graham87 02:11, 25 October 2007 (UTC)

Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

As some of you may know, the UN Convention came into force in early May. I've been working up a page on it, but I have no expertise in disability issues, and the article could probably use some perspectives from people who do. Any volunteers? --IdiotSavant (talk) 12:49, 28 June 2008 (UTC)

Great work by the way, it looks excellent already. EverSince (talk) 14:00, 3 July 2008 (UTC) (just saw my reply here and realised it maybe looks like I was ignoring the volunteers requiest or whatever? didn't mean it that way anyway... EverSince (talk) 15:36, 17 October 2008 (UTC))

Is there an active WikiProject about the disabled?

I have just finished writing an article about Denise Phua, a Singaporean politician dedicated to helping the disabled community in Singapore. The article is currently on peer review in preparation for a GA nomination. Is there an active WikiProject about the disabled, which I can approach to request peer reviewers? I looked around but could not find any. If no such WikiProject exists, consider creating one. --J.L.W.S. The Special One (talk) 12:26, 17 October 2008 (UTC) There is not one yet, but see a few entries on... one is currently being propsed at:

ACEOREVIVED (talk) 19:42, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

You may have seen that there is now indeed a WikiProject dealing with disability. ACEOREVIVED (talk) 22:19, 14 December 2011 (UTC)



I am sorry but I don't think anyone here can assist you with this. You should contact a support organization in your community. - EronTalk 21:53, 15 February 2009 (UTC)
Further to that, based on the area code you provided with your phone number I think you may be in the area served by DBSA Texas. The page I linked to there has a list of local chapters; you may have more success with your question contacting them. - EronTalk 22:04, 15 February 2009 (UTC)


This article seems quite amerocentric, there is a minor mention of UK legislation but the definitions seem entirely American. Could we have a little more balance please? Wikipaedia is meant to, at least, pretend that it is non-partisan. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:44, 27 April 2009 (UTC)

I second the opinion. Yes, agreed that US & UK have done work on this issue but I think you also need to acknowledge UN's initiatives, and as an Encyclopedia the world's perspective should be presented. I am not too worried about how US and UK treat the subject but how UN, as the representative of the world's nations treats it. Somebody, please change the tone. Elncid (talk) 05:16, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

Literature Section

The literature section is pretty sparse. I just tried creating my first wikipedia page for a disabled author I like (Kenny Fries), any suggestions on the best way to increase the literature bit of this article? Studentroku (talk) 17:31, 23 May 2009 (UTC)

I just came back to this page to point out that as of today (July 5, 2009) the "Supplement Material" section only actually refers to one work. I hope that knowledgeable people will round out that section a bit more. Katharine908 (talk) 17:17, 5 July 2009 (UTC)

~Project Group proposal

Hi all reading this. You may like to be informed that there is now a proposal for a

project group on this subject - simply follow this link:

if you wish to offer your support. ACEOREVIVED (talk) 19:41, 2 June 2009 (UTC)

Origin of the term "handicap"

Someone told me they do not like to use this tern because it originated from beggars holding out their caps in their hands for "handouts". Does anyone know anything about this? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:02, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

A little research across a handful of sources tells me that the origin is quite different. It originated in a lottery game known as Hand In Cap in the 1600s which involved players placing money in a cap. It moved later into horse racing where it meant bringing the strongest competitors (a term to please the disabled!) back to the field by giving them extra weight to carry. In golf, it became the number of strokes a player could subtract from his score to give him a chance against better players, so a bigger handicap is an advantage in golf. Only in 1915 did it become a term to describe the disabled, when it was used to describe crippled children. A really good history of the word is in Snopes - HiLo48 (talk) 22:33, 22 December 2009 (UTC)

Opening paragraph

It doesn't seem to reflect much of a world view when the opening paragraph starts with: Disability is defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 as "a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities". Surely there is a better definition that isn't based on American law? Ðiliff «» (Talk) 07:56, 29 October 2009 (UTC)

Have to agree with that, but what to use instead? I thought about the World Health Organisation. It introduces Disability thus:
"Disabilities is an umbrella term, covering impairments, activity limitations, and participation restrictions. An impairment is a problem in body function or structure; an activity limitation is a difficulty encountered by an individual in executing a task or action; while a participation restriction is a problem experienced by an individual in involvement in life situations.
Thus disability is a complex phenomenon, reflecting an interaction between features of a person’s body and features of the society in which he or she lives.''"
Sounds OK to me. HiLo48 (talk) 09:02, 29 October 2009 (UTC)


This article should discuss the various terms that have been used to describe people with physical or mental disabilities including both offensive terms and PC terms.

Offensive terms include: gimp, cripple, retard, spazz, lame, midget, pinhead, mongol, and schizo/schizoid. Terms sometimes seen as offensive: Special-ed, Wheelchair-bound, and slow/slow learner. PC terms: Physically/mentally challenged and differently abled.

Some things to discuss IMO:

  • How some terms where once commonly used to describe people with mental and physical disabilities in the past but have now become offensive.
  • How some terms are only acceptable in some contexts. Mental retardation is generally acceptable in a clinical context but the label retard is generally not.
  • Some terms have been reclaimed by some disabled for use amongst themselves but would still be viewed as offensive when used by non-disabled persons like the way the n-word has been seen as acceptable when said by another black person but not when used by a non-black person.
  • The debate of PC terms for disabled people like physically/mentally challenged and differently abled.
  • The status of less commonly used but not yet offensive terms like such as handicapped.

-- (talk) 12:21, 3 November 2009 (UTC)

We need a WikiProject

The previous proposal for a wikiproject [2] was weakly motivated and got closed inconclusively. It had only two supporters and one of them was "led astray" into accepting WikiProject Accessibility as the "solution" while in fact that project is about making this website itself accessible to users with disabilities. The scope of "disability" covers topics from law to engineering to biography to sport to politics to medicine and so on. The Category "Disability" is linked only to "society" and "medicine" - which is far too narrow. I think there is enough material on Wikipedia to support a "WikiProject Disability". What say you all? Roger (talk) 11:53, 24 March 2010 (UTC)

Good idea. Hadrian89 (talk) 13:18, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
Yes. A real need. HiLo48 (talk) 16:46, 24 March 2010 (UTC)
It seems like there are not many people watching this article. Where else could we post about a WikiProject? Roger (talk) 15:59, 7 April 2010 (UTC)
I've taken the first step! Wikipedia:WikiProject Disability is no longer a redlink! Please sign up and help us build a great WikiProject. Roger (talk) 08:23, 11 June 2010 (UTC)

Paralympics Task Force

The Paralympics Task Force Invitation!

You are cordially invited to join the Paralympics Task Force!
IPC logo (2004).svg You appear to be someone that may be interested in joining the Paralympics Task Force. Please accept this formal invitation from a current member of the project.

We offer a place for you to connect with users who also like the Paralympic Games and facilitate team work in the development of Paralympic Games articles.

If you decide to join the project, please add your name to this list.
I hope you accept! - ~~~
Bib (talk) 08:51, 24 April 2010 (UTC)


I have attempted to organize the content of this condition as per WP:MEDMOS to make it consistent with other medical content.Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 20:11, 29 May 2010 (UTC)

I don't understand what your phrase "organize the content of this condition" is refferring to or means. Roger (talk) 17:14, 1 June 2010 (UTC)

External links need trimming

I believe we should take a really good look at the external links. IMHO the list has many inappropriate items. Listed websites should be of global interest and applicable to disability in the broadest sense. They must not be about individual conditions, countries, services, organisations, etc. Roger (talk) 16:42, 3 July 2010 (UTC)

Agreed. Only problem I foresee - off the top of my head - is that many will actually be websites of individual organisations, etc. I suppose it would be too time-consuming to go through the list, one at a time and reach consensus here about whether it stays or goes, but that might be the way to go (with a hidden note under the section heading to that effect for anyone wanting to add future links). --Technopat (talk) 17:11, 3 July 2010 (UTC)
PS. Roger, I'd sign up to your WikiProject page above, but I swore long ago not to join any more projects. But I'll still keep an eye out here and elsewhere.--Technopat (talk) 17:14, 3 July 2010 (UTC)
I took a pass at trimming some of the links. More work is probably needed. Keep in mind that we have dmoz listed here, so most of these links should probably be there rather than here. - MrOllie (talk) 16:58, 23 August 2010 (UTC)
I think we should have only DMOZ. Cut everything else and leave an "invisible note" for future editors not to add more here but go to DMOZ. BTW the "Further reading" section is heavily biased towards US publications. Roger (talk) 13:22, 27 August 2010 (UTC)
What is DMOZ? HiLo48 (talk) 21:30, 27 August 2010 (UTC)
A structured "index" of websites - See Roger (talk) 13:14, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

people buy people first

i want to know the breif explanation about the subject sentence. PEOPLE BUY PEOPLE FIRST —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:44, 11 August 2010 (UTC)

What is the context? A phrase on its own such as that is practically impossible to understand without the surrounding context. Roger (talk) 05:50, 12 August 2010 (UTC)
As Roger indicates without context tricky, but taking a guess it might refer to a preference for terms such as "person who uses a wheelchair" rather than "wheelchair user"
Icarusgeek (talk) 19:22, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

template/sidebar, horizontal navbar, portal, wikiproject, etc.

As people can see, several of us Wikipedians have now spearheaded a drive on all fronts-- via the WikiProject, a sidebar, an emerging horizontal navbar, and now even a Portal-- to bring together and make solid and cohesive Wikipedia's Disability content. Please join us if you like. Kikodawgzzz (talk) 21:16, 11 September 2010 (UTC)

proposal: splitting physical, sensory, developmental, and mental disability definitions into their own articles

The current overarching "Disability" article is IMHO a mess. I believe we should split the article into Physical disability, cognitive disability, developmental disability (into which the medical content of mental retardation should also be merged), sensory disability, and mental disability (perhaps leaving that last one over at mental illness or emotional disorder where the content probably is now, but I dunno). In each of these articles should be subsections linking to main articles dealing with disabilities of the corresponding general type. Kikodawgzzz (talk) 13:19, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

I support the creation of additional articles covering the topics you suggest but I'm against reducing this article to just a disambiguation page. There is definitely a place for an over-arching article about Disability in the broadest sense. Roger (talk) 13:46, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
I completely agree with Roger. Dodoïste (talk) 14:41, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
I'm not suggesting it be a disambiguation page; I'm suggesting the page be redesigned to be a format like we have over in disability in the arts. Please see the relevant continuing discussion over at WikiProject Disability. Kikodawgzzz (talk) 15:23, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
As a matter of WP procedure it is incorrect to discuss proposals such as this anywhere other than the talk page of the affected article (right here). Roger (talk) 15:47, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
Ok, whatever; I'll just follow all the relevant pages simultaneously, I guess..? ;) It's not my intention to not-follow WP procedure, it's just that I constantly fear that relevant users aren't going to see a given discussion and/or be able to offer their input. Kikodawgzzz (talk) 15:58, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
I know what you mean about worrying that relevant users won't see the discussions. People who have previously worked on the article will mostly be watching it and a notice or two dropped on relevant Project talk pages gets the attention of the rest. It is important for the record of each article's history that all relevant discussion is kept on its talk page - otherwise keeping track becomes a nightmare. So back on this topic: Are we at withdrawing the split proposal and replacing it with a proposal to create "main" articles for the relevant sub-sections, which need to be created or re-arranged? Roger (talk) 17:15, 23 September 2010 (UTC)
Yep, that's what I meant to propose the first time, and as you see, I've replaced the incorrect "split" box with a custom "Info" box explaining what's really being proposed. Izzatbetter? ;) Kikodawgzzz (talk) 20:51, 23 September 2010 (UTC)

I'm not sure what exactly is the proposal here, but I agree that this article sucks. It creates a circular definition with mental disorder for instance. Mental disorder is something that causes disability, which is ... a mental disorder among things that don't quite apply. So mental disorder causes itself in this logic. Terrible. Tijfo098 (talk) 05:23, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Tijfo098, the idea is to create articles for each "category" of disability so that this article can be concentrated on the overall broad subject of "disability". Then it can have a short definition of each "category" with a "main article link" in each relevant section to the to-be-created articles. I hope this explanation works - sorry about all the ""! Roger (talk) 07:03, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

Quick question - the differences between mental, developmental, cognitive and intellectual disabilities are not as clear as they could be. We should try to draw sharper boundaries between them or in some cases merge concepts that are synonymous or have large overlaps. Roger (talk) 07:05, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

I have gone ahead and added layout near top composed of headings I believe this article's main thrust should be organised under. First of all, I implore subsequent editors not to delete these category-headings, but to fill them in instead. To do so would get the ball rolling on not only organizing the main page properly but also on potentially getting these "sub-pages" (branched pages) off to good starts as well. In other words, there should ultimately be actual articles on the phenomenon of physical disability, the phenomenon of cognitive disability, the phenomenon on developmental disability, and so on, and each should be scholarly and scientifically supported, with the main disability page eventually becoming basically a reference point for those more specific articles plus content on disability that can't be fit into any one particular disability category-- like the scholarly stuff, the sports stuff, the inclusion stuff, and so on. It's going to take a lot of work, people, but this page is the English-language Wikipedia page on Disability and we need to keep the seriousness of that fact in mind. Would we feel okay if Wikipedia had crappy head articles on Evolution, on God, on Dinosaurs etc? No. We should take Disability no less seriously than any of those. Let's get moving all. Kikodawgzzz (talk) 00:30, 9 October 2010 (UTC)
I have edited it somewhat and Hidden them because empty sections and sections that are not "fit for public display" should be hidden. I also added a few notes about a few points that need to be clarified. Roger (talk) 09:47, 9 October 2010 (UTC)
Fair enough but how do we access Hidden sections when we want to work on them? Kikodawgzzz (talk) 06:35, 10 October 2010 (UTC)
It is only hidden in "Read" - It appears when you Edit the page. As you add content to a section you can unhide it when its fit for public consumption Roger (talk) 07:31, 10 October 2010 (UTC)
This is frustrating -- by their inaction, no other editor(s) seem all that much interested in pursuing this end, in spite of both the boxes on the top of the page and the discussion going on here. How can we recruit more interested editors? This is the headline article on this topic.... It's a travesty that a well-rounded, well-sourced article cannot emerge for this particular word. Might we look at the other-than-English versions of this page and see if there's anything that can be lifted and translated from one or several of those? The current state of this article is unacceptable. Kikodawgzzz (talk) 18:56, 14 October 2010 (UTC)

It's a tragedy of the commons issue, which is one of the reasons I don't edit articles like Internet or United States any more, because it's just too much damn work to fight off vandals. It's even harder with an article like disability where a large number of interested editors are disabled, meaning some of them are not going to be able to follow simple logic as to why their edits are incompetent or wrong (see some of the more bizarre comments above on this talk page). Unfortunately, the Wikimedia Foundation has refused to tighten its anti-vandalism policies, which is why most competent editors are minimizing their involvement (like me) or fleeing altogether. --Coolcaesar (talk) 18:21, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

Is there a way we could combat this issue by spreading the need for improvement of this article further afield than it currently is? Where else could we put forward that need where it isn't already there? And like I suggested earlier, is there a possibility of importing better-quality text from Wiki languages other than English, over to here? If no one responds to these inquiries in a few days I'll check it out myself. 'Cuz this is absurd, the state of this article. And it needs much more than me, a non-professional, to fix it. Kikodawgzzz (talk) 14:43, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
We can source material from any reliable source as long as it is properly cited. I've just asked a question on the help page about using a sandbox directly under an article to enable collaborative rewriting. If the admins say it's ok I will create a sandbox here for the work - the hidden text method doesn't seem to work well, I'm the only editor to have done any writing on it since hiding. Roger (talk) 14:59, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
I have just received a reply to my query - we can use a Sandbox below the Talk page so here it is: Talk:Disability/Sandbox. I will move the currently hidden text in the article to it now. Roger (talk) 15:11, 24 October 2010 (UTC)


Could someone who feels comfortable doing so please add at the top of Talk:Disability/Sandbox a bit on how the page is intended to be used? And by whom? Is it to be treated as an article is treated: editable by anyone with reverting allowed? Or is it to be treated as a talk page, in which case it will quickly grow and be redundant. Thank you, --Hordaland (talk) 19:17, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

Treat it as if it is an article. It is actually intended to become just a part of this article. We could treat this section here as the talk area for it or create another sub-page as its talk. As each section is developed to the point where it is "fit for publication" it is moved into the actual article. Roger (talk) 19:30, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for your prompt response. I've looked at the page and clicked on some of the "main" articles. There are discrepancies, and it would appear that those articles need to be improved first? (Oh, woe, tooooooo big a project.) Or that simple summaries of the existing "main" articles should be used, instead of writing new ones summaries from scratch?
If, for example, spina bifida is developmental (as well as physical) that will open for an incredible number of conditions involving prenatal mutations. It opens, too, for lots of discussion as to which of them are to be included.
OTOH the suggested definition of physical disabilities is much too limited IMO. What about severe sleep apnea, for example, it is disabling and it is physical.
Sorry I'm so negative this evening. But the project seems to be going 'round in circles, and some simplification and/or more prioritizing seems needed. Hordaland (talk) 20:16, 24 October 2010 (UTC)
I think each section's text can be a summary of the relevant "main" article - basically copying their intro sections would be a fairly good start.
Most disabilities due to congenital defects are "developmental" becuse they result in a delay or completely prevent the achievement of one or more developmental milestones. These "categories" are definitely not mutually exclusive.
It is a huge undertaking, I agree. I think recruiting more participants to the Project could help spread the load.
Well, I'm off to bed now... Roger (talk) 21:05, 24 October 2010 (UTC)

Which is correct?

  • Developmental disability is any disability that results in problems with growth and development.
  • Developmental disability is any disability that is due to problems with growth and development.

I'm unsure! More opinions? --Hordaland (talk) 17:07, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

The main article is not clear on this point. In fact it is a very problematic article. It states that developmental disability can be physical, and/or mental and/or intellectual but the term is used as a euphemism for intellectual disability (particularly in the US). Then the bulk of the article is all about that euphemistic usage and not the proper formal definition.
Out of my own personal experience (I have Spina bifida) the first of the above statements is correct. The impairment (in my case SB) causes problems with physical development. Developmental problems are the result, not the cause of the impairment. Another example: Down syndrome is a chromosomal abnormality that impairs intellectual and physical development.
"Developmental disability" is a "category" that cuts across the other "categories" such as mental, physical, intellectual, sensory etc. Roger (talk) 17:40, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
I'm still unsure; the other version sounds at least as sensible. It could be said that prenatal development problems cause SB. (Downs is a bit different, as it's present from conception, I think.) Perhaps the whole concept can be reworded.?!
Cross-cutting categories (a new term invented by me, I think, with alliteration) include also Invisible or Hidden disabilities. Hordaland (talk) 18:51, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
Here is the definition according to the The American Heritage Medical Dictionary Copyright 2007, 2004 by Houghton Mifflin Company:
"A cognitive, emotional, or physical impairment, especially one related to abnormal sensory or motor development, that appears in infancy or childhood and involves a failure or delay in progressing through the normal developmental stages of childhood."
The source of your uncertainty seems to be that you are not aware that the term "development" as used here refers to the progressive aquisition of abilities and skills during childhood such as walking, talking, continence (toilet training), reasoning, self care (brushing your own teeth) etc. It does not refer todevelopment in the biological sense as in growth and physical maturation such as puberty. In the case of SB, it is a developmental disability in the sense that it permanently prevents or significantly delays the development of abilities such as walking, continence and self-care. Roger (talk) 19:30, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
Okay, I was thinking biology (obviously). (I do have just a tad experience with SB: one summer in my early teens I took care of a 9-year-old wheelchair user every working day while her parents were at work. For me, quite an introduction to a job situation.) --Hordaland (talk) 20:19, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

Section headings

I think it is best if section headings match the titles of their respective "main articles" as far as possible. Roger (talk) 21:13, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

Moving sandbox content to the article

I believe that some of the sections in the sandbox are now sufficiently developed and can be moved into the article where they can be further developed as part of the article in the "normal" way. Roger (talk) 11:22, 30 October 2010 (UTC)

I've done the move - if there are no objections within 7 days I'll have the sandbox deleted. Please don't work in the sandbox from now on - it's all in the article. Roger (talk) 15:37, 3 November 2010 (UTC)

Disability vs. Impairment

An issue that occurs throughout many disability articles is that the distinction between disability and impairment (per the Social model) is not properly maintained. Roger (talk) 17:40, 25 October 2010 (UTC)

That's not just an issue that occurs throughout many disability articles. It's an issue that arises as one travels around the world. Within each country there seems to have developed a particular PC way of talking about disability. There is no international standard. It will be difficult to agree on a uniform approach for the whole English speaking world. HiLo48 (talk) 21:08, 25 October 2010 (UTC)
Apropos "around the world." I like the description in the very short lede to the Norwegian (bokmål) article. The basic word is funksjon = function. Funksjonsnedsettelse is at the individual level and means 'reduction of function'. Funksjonshemning, 'hindering of function', is what society does by not making accommodations. When just one word is needed, funksjonshemning is used -- either that or handikap.
The Swedish article uses too many words to say the same thing. The Danish article is poor -- not well thought out. (I can't read more languages than that.) --Hordaland (talk) 11:56, 30 October 2010 (UTC)
I found an article about a US Supreme Court court case that made a clear distinction between "impairment" and "disability" in it's ruling - Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. v. Williams. Impairment is currently a disambiguation page that just briefly states the distinction per the Social model of disability. Roger (talk) 06:53, 6 May 2011 (UTC)

The Sidebar contents

I don't know if this is right location to bring this up, but I was pretty surprised to hit a page associated with disability (IEP) and see the main Sidebar disability page have a link to "Freak Show". Not only is the term somewhat offensive in this context, it doesn't even seem to be particularly relevant to the discussion (the approaches of dealing with disabilities). Freak Shows may at one point have been an occupation of the disabled, but I don't think it fits with the other contents of the sidebar (which seems to list various mechanisms for addressing a person's disabilities). — Preceding unsigned comment added by William McVey (talkcontribs) 21:59, 20 December 2010 (UTC)

That's always bothered me. I agree that it should not be there. --Hordaland (talk) 22:04, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
I absolutely disagree. Freakshows were (and to a limited extent continue to be) an important component of the social history of disability. It is absolutely releveant to "the discussion of the approaches of dealing with disabilities" as such exhibitions were one of the few ways disabled people could earn some kind of a living and were in many cases the only way the general public of the time were exposed to the reality of the existence of such people - the alternative was begging. In what way are freakshows not "mechanisms for addressing a person's disabilities"? They were in fact exactly that. Present day political correctness and sensitivities about offensivness are no reason to delete/ignore/whitewash this very significant aspect of the history of the sociology of disability. Have you actually even read the Freakshow article? I'd also like to remind readers that Wikipedia is not censored. (As an aside - I'm surprised that you are surprised by this. I wonder how you might be surprised to learn that WP has articles about Fuck and Nigger too - read them, they are interesting, enlightening and quite good articles.) Roger (talk) 22:55, 20 December 2010 (UTC)
I certainly did not recommend that the Freakshow wikipedia page be removed from Wikipedia, so I'm not suggesting any form of censorship. I also did read the article, and noted that other than the "Disability" sidebar, it did not generally discuss Disabilities or the disabled (other than listing specific individuals who had disabilities). I am not even opposed to it being linked from the main disability page as part of the historical treatment of the disabled; however, in the sidebar, it stands out as the only link in the "Disability in Practice" section which is no longer relevant to current treatment/therapy/approaches for dealing with disabilities. You don't see links to Insane_asylum or Eugenics even though those are also historical approaches to dealing with the disabled. William (talk) 16:10, 21 December 2010 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)
Oh I see, you're saying it is in the wrong place in the sidebar. That's fairly easy to fix, IMHO the Sidebar could do with a History section anyway. The Freakshow article could also be improved by addressing the issue you raise. BTW Thanks for mentioning Eugenics - it definitely should be on the Sidebar. Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on one's pov) I'm about to leave on vacation and won't have regular internet access during the next 3-4 weeks, so if I may, can I prevail on interested editors to do the necessary please. (If my earlier post missed the mark somewhat, I apologise. I wrote it very late last night so I wasn't fully alert.) Roger (talk) 17:17, 21 December 2010 (UTC)
If Roger is back, or indeed if anyone else feels like introducing a 'History' section I'm wondering if it might be good to think of a different header that doesn't imply that Eugenics and Freak Shows are past and forgotten.
I haven't got the right word, everything thing I think of is problematic: like 'unusual approaches'/'un PC' (a very POV phrase!)/'deprecated' (ditto)/'alternative' (a bit old-fashioned)/'old fashioned' (non POV)/'problematic' (oh I might as well give up with the commentry they are all pov-laden. But I do feel history is unduly optimistic :-(
Icarusgeek (talk) 19:17, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

Assessment notes

I've reassessed this article to start class because it does not fit B- or C-class criteria. Many sections and statements are unsourced, particularly the section on models, concepts which will probably be non-obvious to most readers. The prose needs work, particularly in converting choppy sections with unrelated sentences into flowing prose, as in the "Discrimination, government policies and support" section and using lists appropriately, as in the theory section and the types of disabilities section. Sadly real life is calling so I can't continue. I would like to hear others' thoughts on where this article needs improvement and perhaps we can begin moving forward again. --Danger (talk) 05:56, 7 January 2011 (UTC)